Monthly Archives: December 2013

Electric cars may become solution for power storage

2014 Ford Focus Electric

2014 Ford Focus Electric (Source: Ford)

By Anthony Alaniz

A pilot program out of the University of Delaware hopes to turn electric cars into energy-grid storage units, allowing the car owners to get paid for the electricity taken from their cars when they are plugged into the grid.

This would be a way to control the flow of electricity into the system when other forms of renewable energy sources, like wind and solar power, are sometimes unstable.

“This is a fascinating option,” said Robert Weisenmiller, chair of the California Energy Commission, in an interview with The Los Angeles Times. “The technology works. You can do this. The question is … what do we need to do to make it happen?”

One issue with the concept is convincing automakers of the potential to create a value proposition for the car owner and boost sales, said Tom Gage, chief executive of EVGrid, in an interview with The Los Angeles Times.

Automakers are not in the business of stabilizing the electric grid. There are also concerns about voiding a vehicle’s manufacturer warranty.

Another hurdle is utility regulations and the companies. Typically, utility companies invest in large-plant technologies that make money by charging the customers. There are no large storage plants to invest in with vehicle storage so they may shy away from this type of emerging technology.

“There is momentum behind this idea,” Willett Kempton said, the brainchild behind the program, in an interview with The Los Angeles Times. “These batteries are a huge resource, and we are going to need them.”

Source: The Los Angeles Times

If you need a car accident lawyer, call The Law Offices of Koenig and Nguyen at 877-720-5779.

Two killed on car accident, one is grandson of Bobby Bowden

Two killed on car accident, one is grandson of Bobby Bowden

Bobby Bowden, former Florida State football coach (Source: USA Today)

By Anthony Alaniz

A vehicle traveling near Winter Haven, Fla. crossed the oncoming lane, crashed through a fence, went down an embankment, and landed upside down in a water-filled ditch. A driver traveling along the highway spotted the car accident around 7:45 a.m. Thursday, according to a Polk County Sheriff’s Office report.

Two men, Taylor Jeffrey Bowden, 23, and Rafael Fernandes De Aguiar Valim, 25, who was driving the vehicle, were both killed in the accident. The third man, Robert Lewis Edwards, 22, was rescued from the neck-deep water.

Bowden is the grandson of former Florida State football coach Bobby Bowden.

“Our whole family had just celebrated Christmas together in Panama City, as well as celebrated T.J.’s graduation from Florida State just three weeks ago,” Bobby Bowden said. “We will cherish those last memories together with T.J. forever.”

This is the second grandson Bobby Bowden has lost in an auto accident. Bowden Madden and John Allen Madden were killed in 2004 when the car they were in collided with a utility truck.

According to the sheriff’s office, it appears alcohol might have been a contributing factor. There were few other details so far from the investigation. The car accident remains under investigation by local officials.

Source: The Los Angeles Times

If you need a car accident lawyer, call The Law Offices of Koenig and Nguyen at 877-720-5779.

Suspected drunk driver kills one in 7-car crash

Suspected drunk driver kills one in 7-car crash

Source: (CBS Los Angeles)

By Anthony Alaniz

A seven-vehicle crash left one dead Monday night in San Fernando Valley, the Los Angeles Police Department said.

The accident happened at 11:05 p.m. in the 19200 block of Ventura Boulevard in Tarzana.

The male driver of a gray Ford Taurus, and suspected of drunk driving, was driving eastbound on Ventura when he crashed into six vehicles stopped at the intersection. He was allegedly traveling at a high rate of speed, the LAPD said.

An unidentified 60-year-old woman from Los Angeles, who was in the first car to be struck, was pronounced dead at the scene.

The suspected drunk driver, who is described to be in his 30s, went into a nearby convenience store, purchased a six pack of beer, and began drinking after the crash had occurred.

“He was loudly asking for the beer, ‘I need beer, beer,’” the clerk said in an interview with CBS Los Angeles.

“We’ve seen this happen in the past where somebody, because of the level of stress or whatever the situation is, they go out and consume some alcoholic beverages,” Det. Bill Bustos said in an interview with CBS Los Angeles.

Three other people suffered minor injuries. The suspect was transported to a local hospital in stable condition.

The accident remains under investigation. No arrests have been made.

Source: CBS Los Angeles

If you need a car accident lawyer, call The Law Offices of Koenig and Nguyen at 877-720-5779.

2014 Lamborghini Huracán photo leaked ahead of official debut

2014 Lamborghini Huracán

Source: AutoFilou.at

By Anthony Alaniz

Lamborghini isn’t known for churning out model after model of new cars. They built their reputation on exclusivity. So when a new model is about to be introduced, the automotive world takes notice—and next up is the 2014 Lamborghini Huracán.

After their successful launch of the Aventador in 2011, their flagship model, talks began about when Lamborghini was going to update the dated Gallardo. Introduced in 2003 as the brand’s entry-level supercar, the Gallardo has been adorned on bedroom walls for the last decade.

Now, Lamborghini is giving us a product that should boost adolescent-teen poster sales and its own bottom line. This will be Lamborghini’s volume model, outselling the Aventador by a wide margin.

The Huracán will be mid-engine and share its platform with the second-generation Audi R8. Power will come from a naturally aspirated 5.2-liter V-10 engine producing around 600 horsepower. It will send that power through all four wheels. This will also be shared with the Audi R8. Sadly, reports state the Huracán will only be offered with a seven-speed automatic transmission.

The price for the Huracán won’t creep much higher than the roughly $200,000 it costs for the current Gallardo, so start saving.

If you need a car accident lawyer, call The Law Offices of Koenig and Nguyen at 877-720-5779.

Underwear clad crime stopper now facing felony charges of sexual assault

Underwear clad crime stopper now facing felony charges of sexual assault

Source: YouTube

By Anthony Alaniz

Riku “The Finnisher” Melartin, a car salesman who gained famed after he chased down an armed robber while in his underwear and holding a gun he called his “dancing partner” is now facing nine felony charges related to allegations of sexual assault involving two teenage girls.

What makes Melartin such a media celebrity are his outlandish stories that rarely hold up to scrutiny. In an interview with Lake Houston Observer, Melartin said he was a discus thrower on Finland’s Olympic team.

But Mika Noronen, a spokesman for the Finnish Olympic Committee, wrote in an e-mail to Automotive News that “no person named Riku Melartin has ever represented Finland in the Olympic Games.”

His association with a local dealership is also a point of contention. After gaining his local fame, he filmed a few ads for John Keating Chevrolet. In the ads, he said he worked for the dealership, but is now stating that he only did promotional work there.

In 1996, he received a permit to practice medicine in Texas, and in 2003 registered with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, which oversees U.S. brokerages, as a stockbroker. These two points are true.

Melartin also owned a Houston strip club that was shut down by authorities after he thwarted the neighborhood robber. Melartin pleaded guilty to operating an unlicensed sexually oriented enterprise.

Melartin is scheduled to appear in court Wednesday, Dec. 18 for his nine felony charges.

If you need a car accident lawyer, call The Law Offices of Koenig and Nguyen at 877-720-5779.

‘Fast & Furious 7′ facing script challenges after Paul Walker’s death

Fast and Furious Paul Walker

(Source: Universal Pictures)

By Anthony Alaniz

After actor Paul Walker’s death Nov. 30, the fate of the Fast and Furious franchise was unknown. Universal Pictures indefinitely postponed filming and production after the tragedy occurred.

Now, Universal is scrambling to figure out how to finish Fast & Furious 7.  According to The Hollywood Reporter, film writer Chris Morgan is writing multiple versions in the hopes of being able to salvage the footage they already have of Walker.

Walker died once filming was underway, but still far from completion.

“Almost exactly half of his role was done,” said one source to The Hollywood Reporter.  Universal has already spent $150 million on the film, and if they are not able to continue with the footage they have, they will have to end production and start over.

Filming is scheduled to resume in January, but it is doubtful the script will be ready by then. The film’s release date, July 11, has been scrapped for the time being. Sources within Universal believe an eighth installment of the franchise will receive the green light from executives once the seventh film is finished.

There are also numerous legal hurdles facing the franchise. If filming needs to start over, there could be a hefty insurance claim. In addition, with cast and crew, their respective guilds have policies in place that dictate how long they can remain on the job and how much they are paid during their hiatus. If it takes longer than expected to revise the script, actors could face scheduling conflicts with other projects.

If you need a car accident lawyer, call The Law Offices of Koenig and Nguyen at 877-720-5779.

Mary Barra to become first woman CEO of a major automaker, leading General Motors

Mary Barra, CEO General Motors

(Source: General Motors)

By Anthony Alaniz

For the first time in automotive history, there will be a woman leading a major automaker. Mary Barra, currently executive vice president of global product development, will become CEO of General Motors on January 15. Currently CEO Dan Akerson is stepping down after his wife was diagnosed with cancer.

“I’m honored to lead the best team in the business and to keep our momentum at full speed,” Barra said in a statement.

Akerson promoted Barra to her current role in 2011 after she was vice president of global human resources. Akerson become CEO of GM in September 2010 amid the company’s bankruptcy.

Barra, 51, started her career at GM in 1980 as a co-op student at Pontiac. She earned her bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Kettering University. She moved through several engineering and managerial positions through her time at GM.

“It was like watching your daughter graduate from college,” Akerson said in a conference call. “I’m very proud that she’s going to lead this company going forward. I’m very confident she’ll do a good job.”

Akerson’s announcement comes just one day after the U.S. Treasury completed its final sale of GM shares.

If you need a car accident lawyer, call The Law Offices of Koenig and Nguyen at 877-720-5779.

Tesla Model S Bought With Bitcoins

2013 Tesla Model S

2013 Tesla Model S (Source: Tesla)

By Anthony Alaniz

Bitcoin, the new digital currency that is attempting to revolutionize global finance was used to buy something other than drugs and other illicit activities—a Tesla Model S.

The Model S, Tesla’s first foray into mass-market automotive production, is the future of electric automobiles.

The sale happened at Newport Lamborghini in Costa Mesa, Calif. However, why anyone would forgo a Lamborghini is still being investigated.

“Lamborghini Newport Beach is proud to announce that we are fully capable of accepting Bitcoin as legal tender for vehicles. We are excited to be opening the door to this new currency,” the dealership said in a blog post.

While the currency is still relatively new, it is gaining traction. Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic is now accepting Bitcoin as an acceptable form of currency. It is still unknown how popular the currency will become, or even how well it will hold its value. Like all things in finance, many are worried that there could be an impending collapse.

All that is certain right now, is that the currency is a hot commodity. A dealership accepting it as a form of legal tender is a great step at legitimizing the currency for the mainstream.

If you need a car accident lawyer, call The Law Offices of Koenig and Nguyen at 877-720-5779.

Porsche Carrera GT at the center of Paul Walker death

2006-Porsche-Carrera-GT-Paul-Walker

2006 Porsche Carrera GT (Source: Porsche)

By Anthony Alaniz

While the death of actor Paul Walker, famous for his appearance in the Fast and Furious film franchise, has shocked many, media attention has been keenly focused on the car he was killed in.

Beneath the hood of the rear-wheel-drive Porsche Carrera GT is a 605 horsepower 5.7-liter V-10 engine. It can achieve 0-to-60 in 3.5 seconds and carried a price tag of $440,000 at the time it was sold. With only 1270 built, the Porsche Carrera GT is quite the rare vehicle.

While the car is powerful and lacks many of the driver-aids found on modern cars, its performance is no longer anything spectacular. Numerous cars on the market today achieve the same performance numbers as the GT at a much lower price, yet they have a lot more technological safety devices.

The Carrera GT has been called a racecar for the street and a street-legal supercar. Investigators have ruled out excessively high speeds and street racing as the cause of the crash.

Experts are speculating that there was a mechanical failure that led to the crash, focusing on an issue with the power steering system.

It will take time before there is an official cause released by investigators, but right now, it appears that it was all a freak accident.

If you need a car accident lawyer, call The Law Offices of Koenig and Nguyen at 877-720-5779.